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The Culture of AIDS in AfricaHope and Healing Through Music and the Arts$
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Gregory Barz and Judah Cohen

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199744473

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:osobl/9780199744473.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 15 October 2021

Born in Africa (1990)

Born in Africa (1990)

Documentary Transcript

(p.35) 3 Born in Africa (1990)
The Culture of AIDS in Africa

John Zaritsky

Virginia Storring

Judah M. Cohen

Oxford University Press

This chapter presents a transcript of John Zaritsky’s 1990 film Born In Africa, the first extended documentary report exploring expressive culture and HIV/AIDS in Africa. Born In Africa chronicles the final tour of Philly Lutaaya, a popular singer from Uganda, whose song “Alone” became an anthem for many within the Ugandan AIDS care community. Lutaaya himself became recognized as the first Ugandan of any significant status to declare himself HIV positive. The transcript offers early insight into the poetics of observation of HIV/AIDS, focusing on how the restrictions and caution exercised on the film crew by the only sub-Saharan African government to acknowledge an AIDS crisis at the time might affect what we see. In this way, Zaritsky’s work offers a window into a relatively nascent network of HIV/AIDS-based non-governmental organizations; of early attempts to “sing” the disease in Africa; and of the role of international health initiatives in addressing local HIV/AIDS agendas.

Keywords:   film, John Zaritsky, Born In Africa, documentary, expressive culture, HIV/AIDS, Africa, Philly Lutaaya, Uganda, non-governmental organizations

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